It’s only natural that once you become familiar with something, you tend to get comfortable. When your comfortable with something you expect it to act a certain way and you get a bit complacent. That’s how I would describe my attitude towards PhotoShop. I use it so much and I’ve gotten comfortable with it. Well, that was until I saw an episode of Call For Help one day at lunch.
It seems that every Wednesday Leo has Alex Lindsay from DV Garage come over for a segment on PhotoShop. Alex focuses on a specific feature of PhotoShop and clearly explains how it works and how you can use it. For someone learning PhotoShop, this is a great way to pick up some skills.
On the day that I caught the show, Alex was explaining how to Actions Automate Your Tasks. This was one of those times where you come across a new feature that you never knew existed and you wonder how you never found it, much less how you could live without it! In a nutshell, by creating a small executeable, you can drag and drop photos onto it and have it perform tasks. This works great for formatting my digital photos for my photo gallery!
I have a ton of photos that are just waiting for me to post onto the weblog. However, there’s quite a bit of work that goes into putting a gallery together. The bulk of the work is in converting the images and cleaning them up. With the droplet, I can do the rough work automatically! I resize the photos from 1600×1200 into 600×450 for the large image and 300×225 for the smaller one. As part of the routine, I also do some automatic adjustments to help clean up the image. I can’t tell you the amount of time these Droplets save me. Well, I suppose I can, what used to take about an hour now takes about 10 minutes. 😯
The tutorial on the TechTV web site does a good job of explaining how to create Action Droplets. However, there’s a lot of stuff in there that you don’t necessarily need. The tutorial is chock full of cool things, but if you’re focused on how to create a Droplet, just read the first (Start recording your work) and last (Create a desktop shortcut) sections. Again, the other stuff is really good, but you don’t have to follow that stuff to create a droplet.